There is plenty of choice when it comes to smartphones, almost too much in fact. Chances are if you are reading this feature, however, you have at least narrowed your options down to the Apple iPhone.

So as you have discarded Android, as well as the other lesser-known options in favour of Apple, we are here to help you decide which iPhone is best for you.

Apple offers the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, the iPhone XR, the iPhone XS and the iPhone XS Max. With seven options, the big question is which one is the one for you? Let us explain the differences to help you figure out which you should spend your cash on.

Quick summary

The iPhone 7 is now the cheapest and smallest iPhone available through Apple. It has an IP67 waterproof aluminium build and it features Touch ID at the bottom of the display. It doesn't have everything Apple has to offer - there's no dual camera or FaceID - but it's not a bad option to consider if your budget doesn't allow for the latest models.

The iPhone 7 Plus offers the same as the iPhone 7, including an aluminium build, but it also adds a dual-rear camera. It misses out on a few of the iPhone 8 features - such as wireless charging - but it's the most affordable dual camera and big screen iPhone available.

The iPhone 8 brings wireless charging, a refined glass-backed body and adds True Tone technology to the display over the iPhone 7. There is a more advanced processor compared to the iPhone 7 and it's still pretty compact, though it does miss out on the full-screen design of the X models.

The iPhone 8 Plus offers the same features as the iPhone 8 but in a larger format and with dual rear cameras. Like the iPhone 8, it misses out on some features compared to the iPhone X models but if you prefer the Touch ID design over FaceID and you want most of the latest tech in a big device, the iPhone 8 Plus could be the one for you.

The iPhone XR is the entry-level model into the new form iPhones with an all-screen front design and FaceID over Touch ID. It has the same build quality and waterproofing as the iPhone 8 models, but it comes in a wider colour choice with a more advanced processor, more advanced camera functions and a lot of screen for its footprint.

The iPhone XS has the same hardware as the iPhone XR but it offers a more premium build, coupled with a dual camera and a slightly higher waterproof rating. You also get an OLED display that is mobile HDR compatible and there are a few extra camera features on board compared to the XR too.

The iPhone XS Max is the iPhone that has it all. The hardware and features are the same as the iPhone XS, but it offers everything in a larger package with a 6.5-inch OLED display dominating. This larger package comes at a price though, because the iPhone XS Max is the most expensive iPhone available.

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Apple iPhone 7

  • Dimensions: 138.3 x 67.1 x 7.1mm, 138g, IP67 water resistant
  • Display: 4.7-inch, 1334 x 750 (326ppi), 3D Touch
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB
  • Battery: Up to 14 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Gold, Rose Gold, Black
  • Price (RRP): From £449 to £549

The iPhone 7 has an aluminium build with Touch ID at the bottom of the display and antenna strips across the rear that sit at the very top and bottom, resulting in a clean look across the back.

Apple said goodbye to the headphone jack in this model, with the Lightning port responsible for both music and charging, flanked by stereo speakers either side. There are four colour options available including gold, silver, rose gold and black, all of which are IP67 water and dust resistant.

The iPhone 7 runs on a chip called the A10 Fusion with embedded M10 motion co-processor. On the rear, there is a singular 12-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/1.8, while the front has a 7-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/2.2.

The iPhone 7 features optical image stabilisation on the rear, along with a Quad-LED True Tone flash, while the front sees auto image stabilisation. It doesn't offer all the latest features, nor the most powerful chipset or most advanced camera, but the iPhone 7 is available at a good price for all that it does offer.

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Apple iPhone 7 Plus

  • Dimensions: 158.2 x 77.9 x 7.3mm, 188g, IP67 water resistant
  • Display: 5.5-inch, 1920 x 1080 (401ppi), 3D Touch
  • Storage: 32GB, 128GB
  • Battery: Up to 24 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Gold, Rose Gold, Black
  • Price (RRP): From £569 to £669

The iPhone 7 Plus is for those wanting a big Apple phone but without the cost. Like the smaller iPhone 7, the 7 Plus has an aluminium build, IP67 water and dust resistance, no headphone jack, and stereo speakers.

The iPhone 7 Plus also has the A10 Fusion processor with embedded M10 motion co-processor under its hood, again like the smaller iPhone 7, but the larger model is claimed to last around 10 more hours compared to the 7 in terms of battery life.

Apple's iPhone 7 Plus was the first iPhone to add a dual-camera setup on the back with two 12-megapixel sensors on board, one a wide-angle lens, the other a telephoto lens. These lenses allowed the iPhone 7 Plus to offer better zoom functionality and bokeh images, though the iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X models enhance this offering. Essentially, the 7 Plus is the cheapest of the dual-camera iPhones.

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Apple iPhone 8

  • Dimensions: 138.4 x 67.3 x 7.3mm, 148g, IP67 water resistant
  • Display: 4.7-inch, 1334 x 750 (326ppi), 3D Touch, True Tone
  • Storage: 64GB, 256GB
  • Battery: Up to 14 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Gold, Space Grey
  • Price (RRP): From £599 to £749
 

The iPhone 8 packs in a few extra features compared to the iPhone 7. It's almost identical in size to the iPhone 7, but it's a little heavier and it trades the aluminium rear for glass.

Like the iPhone 7, the iPhone 8 doesn't offer a headphone jack and IP67 water and dust resistance is still present on the slim, metal and glass body. The iPhone 8 adds True Tone technology to its display, even if the brightness, size and resolution stay the same as the iPhone 7.

The iPhone 8 runs on the A11 Bionic processor with neural engine and embedded M11 motion co-processor. It is claimed to have the same battery life as the iPhone 7 but the iPhone 8 offers wireless charging, as well as fast charging for up to 50 per cent battery in 30 minutes.

In terms of camera, the iPhone 8 offers a single 12-megapixel camera with an aperture of f/1.8, while the front benefits from a 7-megapixel snapper with an aperture of f/2.2. Once again, there is optical image stabilisation on the rear, along with a Quad-LED True Tone flash, but the video recording capabilities have been improved over the iPhone 7 models with 4K up to 60fps and 1080p slo-mo up to 240fps.

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Apple iPhone 8 Plus

  • Dimensions: 158.4 x 78.1 x 7.3mm, 202g, IP67 water resistant
  • Display: 5.5-inch, 1920 x 1080 (401ppi), 3D Touch, True Tone
  • Storage: 64GB, 256GB
  • Battery: Up to 24 hours
  • Colours: Silver, Gold, Space Grey
  • Price (RRP): From £699 to £849 
 

The iPhone 8 Plus packs in a few extra features compared to the iPhone 7 Plus. It's almost the same size as the iPhone 7 Plus but it's heavier, and like the iPhone 8, it switches a metal rear for a glass rear.

There is no headphone jack on the iPhone 8 Plus. IP67 water and dust resistance is on board and like the smaller 8 model, the iPhone 8 Plus adds True Tone technology to its display compared to the iPhone 7 Plus.

The iPhone 8 Plus has the A11 Bionic processor with neural engine and embedded M11 motion co-processor, while the battery life is claimed to be 24 hours. The iPhone 8 Plus is compatible with wireless charging, along with fast charging, like the iPhone 8.

A dual-camera setup is on the back like the iPhone 7 Plus with two 12-megapixel cameras, one a wide-angle lens, the other a telephoto lens. There is optical image stabilisation on the normal camera, a Quad-LED True Tone flash and a 7-megapixel front facing camera with an f/2.2 aperture. For those that want a lot of the newest tech but don't want to trade in Touch ID just yet, the iPhone 8 Plus is a good option if you don't mind a big device.

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Apple iPhone XR

  • Dimensions: 150.9 x 75.7 x 8.3mm, 194g, IP67 water resistant
  • Display: 6.1-inch, 1792 x 828 (326ppi), True Tone
  • Storage: 64GB, 128GB, 256GB
  • Battery: Up to 25 hours
  • Colours: White, Black, Blue, Yellow, Coral, (PRODUCT)RED
  • Price (RRP): From £749 to £899 (pre-order from 19 October)

The iPhone XR is one of the newest iPhone models. It is the cheapest way to get your hands on the new iPhone design with the full-screen front, no Touch ID home button and FaceID. Like the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, the XR has a glass back with IP67 water and dust resistance but it comes in six colour options.

The display size increases from both the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus to 6.1-inches but the footprint of the XR sits in between the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. It's an LCD display again but while it ditches 3D Touch, a technology available on both the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 models, it does offer True Tone technology.

The iPhone XR also runs on Apple's latest A12 Bionic chip, a 7nm processor, just like the iPhone XS and XS Max and its battery life is said to be 1.5 hours more than the iPhone 8 Plus. It supports wireless charging and fast charging, like the iPhone 8 models.

A single camera is present on the back of the iPhone XR, differentiating it from the more expensive XS models. It's a 12-megapixel wide-angle sensor with OIS, but despite not offering the secondary telephoto sensor, the iPhone XR still has Portrait Mode with Depth Control, Smart HDR and Portrait Lighting features like the XS models. There is also a 7-megapixel TrueDepth camera on the front which allows for FaceID and Animojis.

The iPhone XR is the iPhone to buy if you want the latest Apple design with the majority of the latest features, but you don't want to spend over £1000 for the privilege.

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Apple iPhone XS

Dimensions: 143.6 x 70.9 x 7.7mm, 177g, IP68 water resistant
Display: 5.8-inch, 2436 x 1125 (458ppi), 3D Touch, True Tone, HDR
Storage: 64GB, 256GB, 512GB
Battery: Up to 20 hours
Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold
Price (RRP): From £999 to £1349

The Apple iPhone XS is the iPhone with all the latest and greatest technology from Apple. It's the direct replacement for the 2017 iPhone X and it features the same stainless steel frame, glass rear and a very premium finish with a 19:9 aspect ratio all-screen design.

An OLED screen dominates the front, rather than the LCD display of the XR, and you'll find 3D Touch back on board, along with mobile HDR compatibility. True Tone technology is also present and FaceID sits at the top of the display within the notch replacing the Touch ID fingerprint sensor, like the iPhone XR.

Again like the iPhone XR, the XS has the new A12 Bionic processor with neural engine, no headphone jack and it supports wireless charging and fast charging. It does up its waterproof rating to IP68 compared to the iPhone 7 models, iPhone 8 models and iPhone XR though.

A vertical dual-rear camera is present on the iPhone XS, as it was on the 2017 iPhone X, though Apple has upgraded the wide-angle sensor. The arrangement still consists of a 12-megapixel f/1.8 wide-angle sensor with a 12-megapixel f/2.4 telephoto sensor though with dual optical image stabilisation. The same features as the XR are also on board including Portrait Mode with Depth Control, Smart HDR and Portrait Lighting. The 7-megapixel TrueDepth front camera is also present.

The iPhone XS is the iPhone to buy if you want everything Apple has to offer in a slightly smaller and cheaper package than the iPhone XS Max.

 
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Apple iPhone XS Max

Dimensions: 157.5 x 77.4 x 7.7mm, 208g, IP68 water resistant
Display: 6.5-inch, 2688 x 1242 (458ppi), 3D Touch, True Tone, HDR
Storage: 64GB, 256GB, 512GB
Battery: Up to 25 hours
Colours: Silver, Space Grey, Gold
Price (RRP): From £1099 to £1449

The iPhone XS Max offers everything the smaller iPhone XS does but in a larger package. It is the iPhone with the largest display, offering a 6.5-inch OLED screen on its front but within a footprint around the same size as the iPhone 8 Plus thanks to the 19:9 aspect ratio.

Aside from physical size and display size however, the iPhone XS Max has everything the iPhone XS does. This means you'll get the A12 chip, dual 12-megapixel camera on the rear, a stainless steel body, glass back, wireless charging, all the display technology including HDR and 3D Touch and it also has the IP68 water resistance.

The iPhone XS Max is the iPhone to buy if budget isn't an issue and you're after everything Apple offers in the largest possible format.

 

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